В постановлении об улучшении культурно-бытового обслуживания Донбасса от 14.03.1931 г. ЦК КП(б)У уделило отдельное внимание задачам украинской советской кинематографии. Кино должно было использовать все возможности, чтобы помочь Донбассу вернуть угольный долг стране. Об этом говорилось в материале Г. Зельдовича “Донбас кличе”, опубликованном в журнале “Кіно” (1931, №6).
In the resolution of 14.03.1931 on the improvement of cultural and social services to the Donbas, the CC CP(b)U paid special attention to the tasks of the Ukrainian Soviet cinematography. The cinema was supposed to use all possibilities to help the Donbass return the country’s coal debt. This was the subject of G. Zeldovich’s article “Donbass Cliché” published in the Kino magazine (1931, #6).
A mission was set before the newsreel department of Kyiv film factory: to organize work in such a way that newsreel would become an authentic screen organ of the “underground revolution”. In Donbass four operative newsreels were created and a traveling editorial office was established in Stalino which was to issue a special Donbass newsreel every ten days.
For that purpose, additional cameramen were sent to Donbass, and a film laboratory was founded in Stalino. This meant that the Stalin field editorial office of the newsreel had all the conditions to become an assistant in the struggle for coal.
The Kiev film factory immediately got involved in the work. Three working groups headed by directors Lukov, Zhivotovsky and Umansky were created and sent to Donbass.
Lukov’s group was engaged in the shooting of the feature film “The Italian Girl”. Zhivotovsky’s and Umansky’s groups were to produce a series of six scientific and instructional films on the mechanization of coal mining.
All-Ukrainian Committee of Miners, “Ugol” trust and Donetsk Mining Institute took patronage over the groups. But it was too early to calm down. The Donbass demanded movies as soon as possible.
The Kiev film factory gave them all possibilities for fast and successful work: they timely sent them to Kharkov and Stalino, sent a cartoonist to them. But Lukov, Zhivotovsky and Umansky were unacceptably slow. The Film Factory demanded that the filmmakers hurry up and release the films ahead of schedule.
At the same time an article by B. Gudkov “The Cinema – to the Coal Front” (1931, March 13) was published in Moscow’s Kino newspaper. For some reason it did not say a word about the production of feature films about the Donbass. G. Zeldovich considered it unacceptable. Next to the newspaper and instructional films there should be a feature film about the heroic work of the miners. And the initiative of Lukov’s Komsomol group was only part of the work that the artistic sector had to begin.
The author of the article urged directors Dovzhenko, Shpikovsky, Marian and others not to shy away from making films for the Donbass.